I Would Rather Have Gotten Coal

I Would Rather Have Gotten Coal

Have you ever opened up a gift and thought to yourself, "What the f***?" or have you ever got a present and thought, "Please let there be a gift receipt." Well I have. 

A gift should make the recipient happy—or at least not sad or angry. Gift giving is actually a very powerful form of communication and can enhance the connections between people. As superficial as it sounds, when you get a bad gift, its a let down. 

Here are some true gift let downs that might trigger PTSD from a bad gift you've received and or leave you speechless. 

The Passive-Aggressive Gift

One of my favorite 'passive-aggressive gift' stories is about a woman and her mother-in-law. They weren't exactly fond of one another but made holiday's work by tolerating each other. For Christmas, the mother-in-law gave the woman, "How to Be a Hepburn in a Hilton World: The Art of Living with Style, Class, and Grace" a book by Jordan Christy. What's the message she's trying to send here? LOL, ouch! Gift fail. 

Oh No You Didn't!

When my older sister was younger and in her awkward stage she had a classic case of teenage acne. It definitely hurt her self-esteem but she never let anyone know how conscious she was. Around our family we never ever pointed it out or acknowledged it because we knew it was just a phase. That is... until one year, for her birthday, she got Proactiv and an electric face scrubber from our mom. Oh no she didn't, but oh yes she did. Gift fail. Mom fail. 

You Spent Your Money on That?

One year my dad went to Germany right before Christmas. He brought back gifts for all of us and we were all dying to see what glamorous European item he got for our mom. The anticipation was killing us. We sat eagerly to watch my mom open her gift. Low and behold she did not get a gown, expensive chocolates, or jewels—she got a mini punching bag on a stick that was supposed to be used on people when they snore. My dad traveled all the way to Europe and got my mom that. Smh. Gift fail. 

The Painfully Obvious Re-gift

There couldn't be anything more obvious about receiving the same gift two years in a row. In a Times magazine interview, a woman named Chelsea received a Gucci bag from her husband for her birthday. “I loved that purse, it was the best gift I’d ever gotten. I loved it so much I didn’t want to use it because I had two small kids and you know, it would get dirty,” Chelsea, 38, explained. The next year, her husband rewrapped the purse and gave it to her again. “He said since I hadn’t used it, he might as well just give it to me again." Lesson learned: if you get a good gift, use it! if not...BOOM! Gift fail. 

The Gift That Will Never Come

I see last minute shoppers pull this trick almost every year. People who forget to order a gift online in time for the holidays will often print out a picture of that gift and give it to their loved ones in an envelope saying, "It should be here really soon!" My friend did this to me last year. I was supposed to get a Pottery Barn monogramed pillow for my college apartment but that pillow never came. I'm actually pretty sure it was never ordered. Gift fail. 

Basic & You Know It

Socks, ties, candy, body lotion and knick knacks are all things I like to consider 'gift cop outs'. For the people who are average when it comes to creativity or for the people who claim to be too busy to buy gifts are usually the ones who buy gift cop outs. The worst thing about them are that they seem in-genuine and unthoughtful which are two things that should never be associated with annual holidays. 

Want to avoid these gift fails? There is an easy fix... 

The item you've been lusting over for months might finally be in arms reach—all you need are a few contributions here and there to finally Reel it in.

To get the word out, all you have to do is add and activate a Reel, then share it via social media, email, ect. That way your friends and family will know exactly what you want, and chip in or pay it in full as a gift. 

What are some of your own gift fails?

Sophia Zigmond / Writer

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Get 'Er Done

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